Phone users across Ireland are being plagued by calls from foreign numbers in a recent surge of scam calls.
The calls are registered as coming from Pacific and African countries including Vanuatu, Mauritania, the Seychelles, Tonga and Nauru. Numbers begin with codes such as +676, +674, +222 and +235.
Phone users have been confused by the calls as their phone rings for a short time, not giving them a chance to answer. People are advised not to call the numbers back.
TheJournal.ie reports that return calls to one number are answered with a woman’s voice saying “I’ve been waiting for you”. Others have reached strange voicemail messages before hanging up.
Ireland’s communications regulator ComReg told the news site that they had not received specific reports about Vanuatu, but advised people that scam calls can take on many forms and consumers should be extra vigilant.
ComReg advises taking the following precautions:
• Avoid answering calls from numbers that you cannot identify, especially if you are not expecting a call.
• Hang up immediately, on calls where there appears to be no recipient on the other end.
• Be wary of multiple calls being received from the same number.
• Do not call back any number that leaves you a blank voicemail message.
• Do not provide any personal information for example – banking details/PPS number/credit card details/name and address/passport number etc.
Unfortunately there is no way to identify a scam call number, and they can resemble a very normal, familiar, geographical number that we would come across on a daily basis, according to ComReg guidelines.
Have you received unusual calls recently? Let us know in the comments below.